ERIC BURDON - BANDOGRAPHY
1950's and 1960's
 click on image for larger view This BANDOGRAPHY has been based on many and varied sources with a significant amount coming from (or checked against) the wealth of information contained in Dionisio Castello's 1991 book "Good Times". Original Animal John Steel has also confirmed some relevant dates and details from his memory, his knowledge of events and his contemporary records. click on image for larger view
   sound.gif (285 bytes)   [ Once Upon A Time - Eric Burdon ]
    
     

Bandography - Index

      
    "All the press releases on The Animals have always been, like ...   
 'the Alan Price Combo was the basis of The Animals and that I joined The Alan Price Combo' 
  ... which is not true. I mean, it's just that there was a series of bands"  -  Eric Burdon    
    
September 1956 
Eric Burdon and John Steel meet in first year class at the Newcastle College of Art and Industrial Design.
  

  [ Eric Burdon - Web Site ]          [ John Steel - Web Site ]

1957 - The Pagan Jazzmen
Eric Burdon (vocals/trombone), John Steel  (trumpet), Alan "Blackie" Sanderson (drums) and Jimmy Crawford (banjo).  
The Pagan Jazzmen band was formed by Burdon and Steel in January 1957.
     
1958 - Pagan Jazzmen / The Pagans
Eric Burdon (vocals), John Steel  (drums), Alan Sanderson (bass), Jimmy Crawford (guitar) and David Ashcroft (piano/rhythm guitar).
Steel confirms that early in 1958 ... "Eric decided he wanted to get on the Rock and Blues bandwagon, so we changed things around. Alan Sanderson switched from drums to bass guitar,  Jimmy Crawford swapped his banjo in part exchange for his first electric guitar, I changed from trumpet to drums and Eric gave up trying to play an instrument and used what nature gave him, his voice. At this point, Eric and I added a fellow student of Newcastle College of Art, one David Ashcroft doubling on piano and rhythm guitar. A very likeable bloke but with more enthusiasm than talent, we really need a better piano player."  
   
1959 - The Pagans
Eric Burdon (vocals), John Steel  (drums), Alan Sanderson (bass), Jimmy Crawford (guitar) and Alan Price (piano).
Sometime in March 1959 Burdon/Steel met Alan Price who was the rhythm guitarist with the Frankie Hedley Combo when The Pagans were their support act in a church hall gig in Headlam Street, Byker (Newcastle, England) and he joined the band. Although it should be noted that George Pearson's book "Sex, Brown Ale and Rhythm & Blues" is a novel based on the period that spawned The Animals (therefore not totally factual), he indicates that after the interval Price sat in on piano with The Pagans and ... "from that day on Alan Price abandoned regular well paid work with Frankie, for irregular paid work with The Pagans". John Steel recalls that ... "by the end of that year (1959) we weren't getting anywhere and called it a day".   
    
1960 - The Kansas City Seven
The nucleus of the band was Eric Burdon (vocals), Alan Price (piano), Geoff Hedley (tenor sax)  and John Steel (drums).
One night around May/June in the Downbeat Club, Eric asked John Steel if he would join a band he was forming. It was inspired by (Kansas City blues shouter) Joe Turner's "Boss Of The Blues" album. The core of the band was Eric Burdon, Alan Price, Geoff Hedley on tenor sax and John Steel. The band was called The Kansas City Seven. Steel confirms ... "We never had a regular bass player but my old friend Roger Noble was there more often than most. We also had a guitar player named Derek who was then replaced by another old mate George Stoves. Danny Okpoti on alto sax and Pat Odoi on trumpet were regulars plus another trumpeter whose name escapes me hut he is the one wearing the black eye patch in the only photograph that exists of the KC7. The bass player in that snap is not Roger Noble but I now can't put a name to him".   
In his 1986 book "Wild Animals", Andy Blackford refers to the loosely structured band humorously as "The Kansas City Several"... it was actually John Steel who dubbed the band with this name during one of his many long interviews with Blackford when preparing the book.
According to Steel ... "The only regular gig we had was organised by our old friend George Pearson at The New Orleans Club in Melbourne Street Newcastle".
 

[ Alan Price - Web Site ]

 
1961 - The Kansas City Five 
Eric Burdon (vocals), Alan Price (piano), George Stoves (guitar)  and John Steel (drums).
Steel confirms that ... "Danny and Pat moved to Manchester and the band became the KC5 (consisting of) Eric, Alan, Geoff Hedley, George Stoves and me. It was also in the summer of 1961 that Eric, George Pearson and I took our very first trip abroad. The plan was to get to get to The Juan­les-Pins International Jazz Festival near Antibes on The French Cote d'Azur to see Ray Charles who was making his very first appearance outside of America. We made it to Paris but we knew by then that we couldn't afford to go all the way south so the nearest we got to Ray Charles was listening to his records on the juke box in a little bar near our hostel in the Malakoff district of Paris".
      
1962 - The Kansas City Five 
Steel has confirmed from his records the demise of the KC5 on Friday 18-May-62 ... "It was our regular gig at The Downbeat Club and Alan Price didn't show up. It turned out that he had quit without telling us and joined another band called The KonTors whose bass guitarist was Chas Chandler ... the KC5 folded."   
   
1962- No Band Name  
Eric Burdon (vocals), Alan Price (piano), Chas Chandler (bass guitar) and John Steel (drums).                           
Throughout 1962 John Steel did a variety of work including significantly one gig that he recalls at The Cellar Club in South Shields with Eric Burdon, Alan Price and Chas Chandler. According to Steel ... "although The KonTors were getting a lot of work, a splinter group was starting to form". 

[ Chas Chandler - Obituary ]

1962/1963 - Eric Burdon with Blues Incorporated

Eric Burdon (vocals), Cyril Davies (harmonica), Alexis Korner (guitar), Jack Bruce  (bass) and Charlie Watts (drums).

Burdon went to London one weekend to check out the underground buzz about what was happening with Alexis Korner and sat-in with Blues Incorporated. He returned to Newcastle full of exciting tales of the experience.

    

September 1963 - The Alan Price Rhythm and Blues Combo                                            

Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Bryan "Chas" Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Alan Price (keyboards).
By this time John Steel was a professional musician working a regular gig in a night club in the Newcastle City centre and because of the hours he worked he couldn't keep in touch with the local rock and blues scene. He confirms that ... "One day in August I met up with Chas and he told me that the splinter group from The KonTors had become The Alan Price Rhythm and Blues Combo and was doing great with seven gigs a week. The line up was Eric, Alan, Chas, Nigel Stanger on tenor and alto sax and Barry Preston from The KonTors on drums. Chas told me that they were not happy with the drummer and asked me if I would join them. I agreed and played my first gig at The Downbeat Club ... a Saturday all­nighter September 11/12 1963 ... meeting Hilton Valentine for the first time. He had left his band The Wildcats and this was his first gig with Eric and Alan and me, playing lead guitar and replacing Nigel Stanger who left Newcastle having won a place at Oxford University".

[ Hilton Valentine - Web Site ]

    
December 1963 - The Animals                                                                                                                              
Steel confirms that ... "in December 1963 we played our first gigs as The Animals in London. The new name was suggested by Graham Bond who played a large part in introducing us to the London music scene. So as Eric said (refer top of this page), the last band name before The Animals just happened to be The Alan Price Rhythm and Blues Combo ... but it was only another name. It was Alan who joined Eric and me in The Pagans and it was always Eric who led the way".
  

Mid 1963 - The Animals

Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Alan Price (keyboards).
By Autumn (northern hemisphere), The Animals made their first record.  It was a 12", one sided, 4 track EP done at a studio in Wylam (a town west of Newcastle Upon Tyne).  It was a very limited private pressing on Graphic Sound Ltd  (ALO 10867). It is believed that a few of these recordings went out under the name of The Alan Price R&B Combo.
 

April 1965 - The Animals                                                                                                                                

Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Mickey Gallagher (keyboards).
Alan Price left the band in April 1965. Mickey Gallagher filled in on keyboards in Bassingstoke before Dave Rowberry joined the band as Alan Price's replacement (in 2004 Gallagher replaced Dave Rowberry in Animals and Friends).

      

[ Mickey Gallagher - Photo ]

May 1965 - The Animals                                                                                                                                  

Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Dave Rowberry (keyboards).
Dave Rowberry joined the band as the permanent replacement for Price in May 1965 prior to the Scandinavian tour.
  
[ Dave Rowberry - Obituary ]
August 1965 - The Animals Big Band
Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Dave Rowberry (keyboards) plus a brass section consisting of Mike Carr, Kenny Wheeler, Greg Brown (trumpets), Al Gay, Stan Robinson, Dick Morissey (tenors) and Paul Carroll (baritone).
The Animals formed a once-off big band to play at the 5th Annual British Jazz & Blues Festival in Richmond, England on 05-Aug-65.
  
March 1966 - The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), Barry Jenkins (drums), Dave Rowberry (keyboards). 
Barry Jenkins replaced John Steel on drums. The Animals officially disbanded on 05-Sep-66.
  
August 1966 - Eric Burdon & The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums) / Barry Jenkins (drums), Dave Rowberry (keyboards). 
The band name first appeared as Eric Burdon & The Animals on the August 1966 release of the "See See Rider" / "She'll Return It" single (MGM K13582). "See See Rider" on this release was however an edited version from a July 1966 studio session with Frank Zappa in New York (recorded by the final line-up of The Animals) while "She'll Return It" was from an  earlier studio session in London in January 1966 (recorded by the penultimate line-up of The Animals before Jenkins had replaced Steel on drums). 
       
September 1966 - Eric Burdon & The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals) and Barry Jenkins (drums) plus studio musicians. 
The "Eric is Here" album released March 1967 (tracks were recorded in New York, USA immediately prior to Burdon returning to the UK in September 1966 (he appeared in the "Ready, Steady, Go!" special featuring Otis Redding and Chris Farlow - recorded at the RSG studios in London on 16-Sep-66).
 
October 1966 - Eric Burdon & The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals), Barry Jenkins (drums), John Weider (guitar/violin), Vic Briggs (guitars), Danny McCulloch (bass guitar) and Tom Parker (keyboards).  
Dionisio Castello comments in his book that "Tom Parker disappeared" soon after the new band was formed. Parker being a member of the group for a brief a brief period of time in late 1966 has also been confirmed to Kojak by John Steel in 2004.
  
December 1966 - Eric Burdon & The Animals 
Eric Burdon (vocals), Barry Jenkins (drums), John Weider (guitar/violin), Vic Briggs (guitars) and Danny McCulloch (bass guitar).  
This line-up of the group recorded the "Winds Of Change" album in London on 08-Jan-67 and USA on 10-Feb-67 as well as the "The Twain Shall Meet" album in Los Angeles USA on 01-Dec-67. 
    
March 1968 - Eric Burdon & The Animals 
Eric Burdon (vocals), Barry Jenkins (drums), John Weider (guitar/celeste), Vic Briggs (guitar/bass) and Danny McCulloch (bass/vocals/12 string), George Bruno/Zoot Money (hammond organ/piano/vocals).    
This line-up included Zoot Money who had been added to the band before the commencement of the US tour in May 1968.  It was this line-up that recorded the "Every One Of Us" album in Los Angeles, USA on 01-May-68. Zoot Money's real name is George Bruno Money ... he was credited on the album as George Bruno due to contractual problems. 
   
August 1968 - Eric Burdon & The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals), Barry Jenkins (drums), John Weider (guitar/celeste), Zoot Money (hammond organ/piano/vocals) and Andy Summers (guitars/vocals).  
This line-up of the band recorded the "Love Is" double album in Hollywood, USA on 31-Oct-68. Andy Summers was also known as Andy Somers. Eric Burdon & The Animals disbanded in December 1968 after the sudden end to the Japan tour.
   
December 1968 - The Animals
Eric Burdon (vocals), Hilton Valentine (lead guitar), Chas Chandler (bass guitar), John Steel (drums), Alan Price (keyboards).
On 22-Dec-68, Burdon was involved in a once-off benefit gig with the original members of The Animals at Newcastle City Hall (for the Percy Hedley Spastic School and the Muscular Dystrophy Group of Tyneside).
     
June 1969 - No Band Name 
Eric Burdon (vocals), Jimi Hendrix (guitar, vocals), Bonnie Bramlett (vocals), Buddy Miles (drums), Cornelius Flowers (saxophones), Terry Clements (saxophones), Brad Campell (bass) and Lee Oskar (harmonica). 
Performance at Newport 1969 Pop Festival, Devonshire Downs, CA on 22-Jun-69.  
   
August 1969 - Eric Burdon & WAR
Eric Burdon (vocal/percussion), Papa Dee Allen (conga/bongos/percussion/vocals), Harold Brown (drums/percussion/vocals), B. B. Dickerson (bass/vocals), Lonnie Jordan (organ/piano/vocals), Charles Miller (tenor, baritone and alto saxes/percussion/vocals/flute), Lee Oskar (harmonica/percussion/vocals) and Howard Scott (guitars/vocals).  
"Unfortunately, Peter Rosen, the bass player, killed himself (drug overdose) before we got the project off the ground. B. B. Dickerson was brought in from Hawaii. He'd been with an earlier band with the Night Shift Guys." (from Eric Burdon's 2001 book "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" with J. Marshall Craig). This band line-up recorded the "Eric Burdon Declares WAR" album, the "Black-Man's Burdon" double album and the "Love Is All Around" album. After a gig in London on 05-Feb-71, due to illness, Burdon left WAR to continue the English tour without him. During Burdon's lengthy convalescence, WAR embarked on a very successful solo career.   
           
               

Bandography - Index

   

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